When writing in first person point of view, do I write in past tense?

For example, would I put "I watch"or "I watched"? Also, if there's anything else you would want to tell me about writing in first person, I'd greatly appreciate it.

1 Answer
Apr 25, 2016

That depends on a quite a few things.


If you are writing about something that (clearly) happened to you in the past, as a kind of memoirs, and you are telling this story to your audience, you usually use past tense.

But if you are involving your reader in something that they can witness right now, as if they were part of it, you use present tense.

It's hard to decide: do you want your reader to watch from a distance (in time and place), or do you want him/her to be there with you?